Parents of 2 among 3 dead after fall in icy Arizona lake

Woods Canyon Lake is located 40 miles east of Payson, Arizona. (Google map)

Woods Canyon Lake is located 40 miles east of Payson, Arizona. (Google map)

FOREST LAKES, Ariz. (AP) — A mother and father of two as well as another parent, all Indian nationals, were the drowning victims recovered from a frigid Arizona lake.

The Coconino County Sheriff's Office confirmed the identities of 49-year-old Narayana Muddana and his wife, Haritha Muddana, and 47-year-old Gokul Mediseti.

Authorities say deputies in Forest Lakes responded the afternoon of Dec. 26 to reports that three people were missing in Woods Canyon Lake.

Rescuers pulled Haritha Muddana from the water, but she was pronounced dead. The two men were found the next day.

Jon Paxton, a sheriff's office spokesman, told ABC-15 TV in Phoenix that the trio were part of a group of three families who had driven up from their homes in the Phoenix suburb of Chandler. They had wanted to enjoy the outdoors the day after Christmas.

It appeared they "wanted to get some pictures out on the ice," Paxton said.

That's when the three parents fell through.

Authorities say the Arizona Department of Child Safety has temporarily taken custody of the Muddanas' two young daughters.

A GoFundMe purported to be for the families has already raised over half a million dollars.

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